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A robbery homicide investigation triggers a series of events that will cause a corrupt LAPD officer to question his tactics.



(story), (screenplay)
4 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Bobby Keough
Beth Williamson
Arthur Holland
Darryl Orchard
Gary Sidwell
James Barcomb
Janelle Holland
Henry Kim
Eldon Perry III
Deena Schultz


Set in the Los Angeles Police Department in April 1992, Dark Blue is a dramatic thriller that takes place just days before the acquittal of four white officers in the beating of black motorist Rodney King and the subsequent L.A. riots. In this racially-charged climate,the LAPD's elite Special Investigations Squad (SIS) is assigned a high-profile quadruple homicide. As they work the case, veteran detective Eldon Perry, known for his tough street tactics and fiery temper, tutors SIS rookie Bobby Keough in the grim realities of police intimidation and corruption. Meanwhile, Assistant Chief Holland, the only man in the department willing to stand up to the SIS, threatens to end Perry's brand of singlehanded "justice" on the Los Angeles streets. While navigating through the tumultuous neighborhoods of South Central L.A., Perry and Keough must track down cold-blooded killers and face their own demons, which prove to be more ruthless than the criminals they pursue. Written by Press kit

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Sworn to protect / Sworn to serve / Sworn to secrecy See more »

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence, language and brief sexuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:




| |


Release Date:

21 February 2003 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

4-29-92  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$15,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$3,880,688 (USA) (21 February 2003)


$9,059,588 (USA) (14 March 2003)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


James Ellroy declared that he had nothing to do with this film. David Ayer entirely rewrote his script and only conserved the names of some characters. See more »


When Perry goes to 12657 Juliet, the number of shotgun shells remaining in the storage clip on his shotgun after he loads it alternates between two and three between shots. See more »


Jack Van Meter: Sail boats. I don't understand 'em. I prefer a big boat with a big motor on a big lake behind a big dam. How about you Arthur, are you a motor guy or a sail guy?
Arthur Holland: I don't like boats and I don't like you.
Jack Van Meter: Has this department been so bad to you that you feel driven to humiliate it?
Arthur Holland: Don't hide behind LAPD blue, It's not your color.
Jack Van Meter: Arthur, No one buys your sudden transformation into this beacon of higher consciousness and moral right. The last thing your ham-fisted political ploy will get you is ...
See more »


Features Detour (1945) See more »


Wild Thing
Written by Matt Dike, Tone Loc (as Anthony Smith) and Marvin Young
Performed by Tone Loc
Courtesy of Delicious Vinyl
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User Reviews

Good cop or bad cop, all heads will roll!
13 June 2006 | by (the Doomed Megalopolis of Blasphemous Technoids) – See all my reviews

I'm not the biggest fan of police/crime drama's (with or without some action and thrills thrown in the mix). Most of the time (especially the direct-to-DVD ones) those movies are simply below average. DARK BLUE, however, rightfully received a theatrical release. This movie's got a good story to tell (written by James Ellroy), supported by more than decent acting performances. Kurt Russell delivers one of his best performances yet as Eldon Perry, a middle aged unsympathetic loud-mouth cop on the verge of promotion. He doesn't question his orders given by corrupt superiors, and that's how he was able to follow in his father's footsteps and climb the ranks of the LAPD. I haven't seen Scott Speedman in many movies yet, but from the looks of it he's a decent actor too, who holds strong when acting aside Kurt Russell.

Given this is a James Ellroy story, one quickly is led to believe that there are way more corrupt cops out there than good ones. And even the honest ones (in pursuit of justice) have a few skeletons in the closet. All characters have a lot of flesh on their bones, which make them all very interesting. And because of the many fluent dialogues that demand your attention, you tend to forget that all the things going on the way they do, can't last forever. So when things do go wrong, it's a bit of a surprise for who it goes bad and for who it gets even worse.

The whole background story with the lawsuit against the cops who beat up Afro-American Rodney King is cleverly used to stage the 90's setting. And the riots in the street, caused by the decision of the jury near the end of the movie, add a lot to the exciting climax of DARK BLUE. This one's as decent as L.A. CONFIDENTIAL, only, maybe, a bit less intriguing. But still, an excellent movie with solid acting and a good story.

15 of 22 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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